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Under the Hood: Chapter IV

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Chapter IV of Under the Hood, Hollis Mason's autobiography, was released with Chapter III and published with Watchmen's second chapter.

Summary

The Minutemen

He details the start of the Minutemen. Captain Metropolis wrote Sally Jupiter care of her agent, Laurence Schexnayder, suggesting they meet to form a group of masked adventurers to combat crime. He noted Captain Metropolis as so polite and reserved that Sally's drinking, swearing and mode of dress were sure to shock him speechless. Later, he realized Sally was the only one who had her agent's address in the phone book. Schexnayder was a man in his mid-thirties who seemed very mature and respectable, and in mid-1939, suggested placing an ad in the Gazette asking others to step forward. One by one they went forward over the next few weeks. The Minutemen were born.

Friendship

Sally attached herself swiftly to Hooded Justice, who Hollis notes as one of the biggest men he had ever seen, but he never seemed very interested in her. They started going out 'sort of' after the first Minutemen Christmas party in 1939, which is the last time he recalls all of them having a good time together.

The Comedian

Hollis calls Eddie Blake a disgrace to their profession, referring to a meeting in 1940 after which he attempted to sexually assault Sally Jupiter in the Minutemen trophy room. He then left the group shortly after by mutual consent and with a minimum of publicity. Schexnayder persuaded Sally not to press charges against Eddie Blake for the group's image and she complied, so he went his way unscathed. Hollis does mention an unconnected stabbing incident about a year later that left him severely wounded, which resulted in him deciding to change his flimsy yellow costume for the leather armor he wears later. He goes on to be a war hero in the Pacific, but Hollis hopes to God that America can find itself a better class of hero than him.

Problems

In 1946, it was revealed in the newspaper that the Silhouette was living with another woman in a lesbian relationship. Schexnayder persuaded the group to expel her, and six weeks later she was murdered, along with her lover, by one of her former enemies. In the same year Dollar Bill was shot dead, and in 1947 Sally Jupiter quit crime-fighting to marry her agent, Laurence Schexnayder, and in 1949 she had a daughter, Laurie. He noted that there was nothing left to fight, and all the villains were either in prison or committed to less glamorous activities. Even Moloch, who had started at age seventeen as a stage magician and evolved to an ingenious and flamboyant criminal mastermind through underworld contacts made in his world of nightclubs, had moved into impersonal crime like drugs, financial fraud and vice clubs. He says the Minutemen were finished, but it didn't matter because the damage had been done.


Under the Hood
Chapter IChapter IIChapter IIIChapter IVChapter V

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